THE third of the Nockolds brothers, Harold, has died, at the age of 75. Having the distinction of deciding while at school that he wanted to be a motoring journalist (when most of us opted for engine-driver or racing-motorist, and there were no Sir William Lyons’ scholarships), how well he fulfilled that ambition. Like other now well-established motoring writers, Nockolds started on the staff of MOTOR SPORT — it is said as its Continental Correspondent, who never left London, doing his race reports by translating from foreign newspapers! He left to become The Times Motor Racing Correspondent in 1936. I well remember how PROs would drop what they were doing or those they were talking to and step out smartly to meet the immaculately-dressed Mr. Nockolds when he appeared at one of their Press functions.
He cemented this affinity with the late Dudley Noble (who had a habit of coming to Press parties in vast carriages from Daimler Hire) by writing the first definite history of Rolls-Royce, “The Magic of a Name”, which G. T. Foulis & Co published, with colour inserts, in 1938, a book that has been widely followed up ever since.
After a distinguished war career ending up as an RASC Major, Nockolds returned to The Times in 1946. He left in 1960 to edit Motor and rose to take successively important positions in Temple Press, finishing in the MD’s chair, and then rising equally successfully in IPC Transport Press, ending as its Deputy Chairman. His last great task was the complication of a two-volume history of the Lucas Group and he was Chairman of the GMW in 1952, 1957 and 1963, before being elected a Vice-President. Harold Nockolds was also a committee member of the RAC and a Liveryman of the Worshipful Company of Coachmakers and Coach Harnessmen. — W.B